It’s fascinating how many variations there are on 3D printing. There are the main types of 3D printing technology, such as FFF, SLA and SLS, and then there are the variations on those, developed by companies aiming to change the 3D printing industry with fresh techniques. A lot of work goes into creating these new technologies, and consumers get to reap the benefits of faster, stronger and/or higher-resolution 3D prints.
The latest 3D printing technology comes from a company called Sprybuild, created by a group of engineers from Ukraine. Sprybuild offers a variation on DLP 3D printing technology called Continuous Production with Wavefront Converting, or CPWC. The company describes its original technology thus:
“The technology of high-speed continuous printing from a liquid photopolymer, invented and developed by Sprybuild, is based on the transformation of the wave front of actinic radiation, which forms the product’s projection directly in the region of construction: on the border of the photopolymer – the optical interface.”
It’s highly technical-sounding, but what it comes down to is a method of 3D printing that redistributes radiation in the print layer and allows for fast, high-resolution prints. Print speed, according to Sprybuild, can be anywhere from 1-10 mm per minute along the axis of construction. It’s a versatile technology, too, capable of printing with any photocurable liquid, including liquids with additives and fillers. Those fillers can include, for example, nano- and micro-particles, fillers, dyes, microfibers, ferromagnetics, paramagnetics, metals, or luminophores.
“By creating CPWC technology, we are opening new opportunities for high-speed additive manufacturing of a wide variety of products from any photopolymers and compositions based on them,” Oleg Khalip, Sprybuild CTO and the creator of CPWC technology, told 3DPrint.com.
“We are inspired by how 3D printing technologies change people’s lives for the better: quality, speed, ease of achieving the goal and an unprecedented variety of possibilities. We have opened the opportunity to manage the process of building products at the micro level, and mastering these opportunities will offer many more interesting things. Speed, quality, reliability, universal solutions and affordable prices.”
Clearly, there are numerous potential applications that CPWC could be used for, including composite products or objects with varying properties, such as rigid, flexible and jellylike. There’s a lot of potential for the medical field, as items can be 3D printed with fillers like medications or microcapsules. The technology enables the 3D printing of objects with microcellular or microcapillary structures; a pixel formed with CPWC can be significantly smaller than a pixel formed with standard SLA/DLP technology. This makes CPWC a promising technology for bioprinting applications.
Other materials that can be used with CPWC include:
- Acrylic polymers, acrylamides, and other materials that can be cured using radical polymerization
- Epoxied monomers, vinyl ethyl monomers, and others suitable for acid curing
- Photocurable silicone resins that can be used for medical devices
- Photocurable polyurethanes
- Photocurable resins suitable for investment and full-mold casting
- Photocurable sol-gel compositions that can create glass-ceramic and ceramic products
- Photocurable hydrogels for bioprinting
- Polymerizable liquids containing live cells
- Biodegradable resins for applications like dissolvable stents and drug delivery implants
So when will this technology be on the market? There’s no word on that just yet, but Sprybuild has filed a patent application for the technology and 3D printer, and will be unveiling the 3D printer for the first time at TechCrunch Disrupt, which is taking place in San Francisco from September 18th to the 20th. If you’ll be attending, you can visit Sprybuild and see a demonstration of Continuous Production with Wavefront Converting in the Startup Alley area. Sprybuild also has other products and patent applications in the pipeline, so it’s likely we’ll be hearing more about this young company.
You can see a brief demonstration of CPWC below:
Discuss this story and other 3D printing topics at 3DPrintBoard.com, or share your thoughts below.[Images provided by Sprybuild]